00:05 – Intro 01:44 – Citizens arrest a man – what methods do they use? 02:21 – What are wrist locks and armbar takedowns? 03:36 – How do they differ from other methods? 04:10 – Arm drags are not equivalent to armbar takedowns 04:28 – Performance in combat sports 04:44 – So why do police train this way? 06:08 – Why do we teach police this way if it doesn’t work? 07:17 – Fighting is impossible to understand without doing it. 08:14 – Discussing examples 09:41 – Safety concerns 11:43 – Do wrist locks and armbar takedowns have any use at all? 12:41 – What should we teach instead?
BJJ black belt Idriz Redzovic takes down and controls a man who assaulted staff in a shop. Idriz uses the “gift wrap” method to maintain control for an extended period without any harm to himself or the belligerent man. He hands the man over to police when they arrive without issue.
The methods used by police in this example are typical of those used by people who have very little grappling experience – holding wrists and pressing down on the head without controlling the body. Two police hold the man who has been arrested for possession of a knife in a public place, while a crowd gathers which becomes a safety concern for the officers. Although the methods used are not causing harm (the suspect is lying on his side rather than face down, most of the officer’s weight is on his own feet and the knee is pressed into the head rather than neck), the knee on the head resembles the George Floyd incident which could quickly incite the crowd to intervene.
It is very likely the man was actively resisting and attempting to escape custody before this video clip starts, however it would not make sense to continue once he saw that a crowd had gathered and was filming. Playing the victim only makes sense, whether it is right or wrong. This video resulted in the police officer being suspended.
Matt Serra, shown in the second video restraining a man who had just threatened restaurant staff and attempted to punch him, sits in the mount position which has the man immobilised. Serra controls the wrists only to prevent him from grabbing and hitting, not as the primary method of control. It also allows the man to breathe and causes very little discomfort.
Reluctant to go hands-on, police use their baton, then Taser which fails multiple times. One police officer attempts to knock over the man by rushing at him from behind but ultimately loses control as he stands up. The Taser is used again, then OC spray before the Taser is used once more before the man is taken into custody.
All of the tools police used in this instance depend on pain compliance, apart from the Taser which incapacitates for mere seconds IF the two prongs make contact correctly and in the correct positions on the body. Physical control with grappling techniques may have resulted in a faster and safer arrest, however these officers either lack those skills or were not willing to go hands-on.
The police officer holding the leg of the suspect has been derided many times on the internet. And it does look somewhat comical the way he is dragged around by the suspect.
However, his actions are effective in preventing the suspect from escaping. It is the other officer who should then be taking advantage of this by clinching with the suspect to take him down. Instead, he attempts to use his baton to effect pain compliance which fails. He only continues to use the baton which makes them both look foolish.
This is yet another example of why police need at least fundamental grappling skills, and their training is often not up to the task.
Footage from both officers and a bystander are included in this video.
Video illustrates how quickly police interactions can become violent as people who intent to attack will hide their intentions, then attack with the least warning possible. Also, the police officer who was shot remained operational throughout the incident – another example of how a single gunshot does not necessarily incapacitate. It was also difficult to avoid shooting in the direction of the officer’s partner as the threat was still active and his partner was moving toward the closest cover.
These cops first attempt to control the man by grabbing the wrists, just as they have been trained to do. The suspect passively resists, denying control. The cop then moves to the schoolyard headlock which is similarly effective. OC spray is then used which also apparently does not work. A second man begins to intervene. Video ends with no resolution.